Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Nobody Bites on Leftovers on Blues Plate Buyouts Could Reach More Than $2 Million

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Nobody Bites on Leftovers on Blues Plate Buyouts Could Reach More Than $2 Million

Article excerpt

The Blues took a financial bath on Monday.

That's the bad news.

None of the Blues' extra players was claimed in the National Hockey League waiver draft, meaning the Blues will either have to buy them out or pay them big money to play in the minors. Either way, it's a hefty cost. Combined, Adam Creighton, Basil McRae, Mike Hudson and Rob Pearson are set to earn $3.15 million over the next two years. Buyouts would be two-thirds of the total, spread out over double the term. Now, the good news. The kids have made the team. After Creighton, McRae, Hudson and Pearson went unclaimed in the waiver draft, they were sent to the Blues' American Hockey League team in Worcester, Mass., along with goalies Jamie McLennan and Mike Buzak. In addition, the Blues released free-agent tryout Ron Sutter. The cuts left the Blues with 27 players in camp, including Yuri Khmylev and Gary Leeman. Khmylev wasn't picked up in the waiver draft, and Leeman will go to Worcester once he clears waivers. So, barring a trade or unforeseen circumstance, forwards Harry York, Robert Petrovicky, Jim Campbell and Konstantin Shafranov, and defenseman Libor Zabransky will be on the opening night roster. Jamie Rivers also will stick around, for now, because of injuries to Al MacInnis (elbow) and Igor Kravchuk (knee). "We feel the youngsters are ahead of the veterans, otherwise we'd have sent the youngsters down," Keenan said. "We're still not 100 percent sure on them, but we like what we've seen at this point, and we've still got the other guys for depth." The youngsters add speed and skill, and bring the Blues' average age down, if not the payroll. Despite the cuts, the Blues payroll - according to NHL Players' Association figures - is more than $28.5 million, including base salaries and bonuses. That doesn't count the money being paid out to players who won't be here. …

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